Question re: Mass Effect 3

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Solo4114

Master Member
I haven't played the game. I haven't even played Mass Effect 2. However, I know myself pretty well, and I know that when the ending to a story sucks, it pretty much kills my enjoyment of everything that came before. Don't bother arguing with me about that, it's just how I am. Moving on.

My question here is as follows:

If, from the sound of it, nothing you do in the game series matters as far as providing different outcomes -- and by that I mean the ENTIRE series -- then is it really worth it to play Mass Effect 2, its DLC, and Mass Effect 3? I've heard the ending was INCREDIBLY disappointing both because of its existentialist-nihilist connotations ("Haha! Stupid humans. You think anything you do matters?! Pfft. Whatever. The only thing that matters is what you decide matters because you have no ability to affect the universe around you in the grand scheme."), and because something about the ending is a real bummer anyway (I guess the hero dies? Can't save their significant other? The bad guys win? I dunno. Like I said, I haven't played it).

The actual facts about WHAT the ending is aren't as important to me as the impact the ending has and whether it's just bad -- again, both in the sense of "unsatisfying because it's a downer" and "unsatisfying because they basically invalidated all player choice/input/actions and left a bunch of stuff unanswered".

So, with that in mind, is it really worth it FOR SOMEONE LIKE ME (as in someone for whom a bad ending will make you say "Well that's a whole lot of time I'll never get back. F**k.") to play the other games in the series after the first one?

I quite enjoyed the first game and was really digging the notion of my choices in Game 1 affecting stuff that'd happen in Game 3 even, because it seemed such an ambitious and cool concept. If the truth is "Nah, doesn't matter that much," then I'm less inclined to bother playing. If the truth is also "Oh, and the ending is a huge downer" then, yeah, still not interested in playing.

So, should I bother, or just play other stuff instead?
 

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Wes R

Legendary Member
Play Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 2. If they do something to improve ME3 then you can always get it an any DLC but unless they do an expansion DLC like Bethesda did with Fallout 3's ending I don't see it being all that worth it.
 

AxiomUltra

Active Member
So, with that in mind, is it really worth it FOR SOMEONE LIKE ME (as in someone for whom a bad ending will make you say "Well that's a whole lot of time I'll never get back. F**k.") to play the other games in the series after the first one?
Nope.

I'd say it would be worthwhile for those that prefer the journey over the destination.
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
They just semi announced an extended cut DLC for it but even though it's free (supposedly i trust nothing they say anymore) I'd wait and see as it could be nothing but cut scenes and no gameplay.
 

Solo4114

Master Member
Well, if said cutscenes are improvements on what happens, then it might be worth it.

But I think my initial response of "I'm gonna wait and see" is the right way to go. I've got plenty of other stuff to play right now, so no need to start up ME2. Hell, I never even played Dragon Age 1 and I bought a bunch of the DLC for that, so I might as well play that first.

Oh, and I hear DA1 has nothing to do with DA2 in the sense of your character or decisions in the world mattering in the second game. True?
 

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Satxer

Sr Member
I'm playing through 2 again, and plan to play through 3 as well again. It is worth it to play them. I love part 2, maybe a little more than 3.
 

Jeyl

Master Member
The only thing that matters is what you decide matters because you have no ability to affect the universe around you in the grand scheme."), and because something about the ending is a real bummer anyway (I guess the hero dies? Can't save their significant other? The bad guys win? I dunno. Like I said, I haven't played it).
Worse.

Your hero is introduced to a brand new character 5 minutes before the whole series ends. This new character is the one being RESPONSIBLE FOR THE REAPERS. He goes on about how justified he is in committing galaxy wide acts of genocide over the course of billions of years, and Shepard, the one who has been fighting and suffering because of the Reapers, GOES ALONG WITH IT. The hero of the series who fights the reapers is actually believing everything this kid is saying even though everything our hero has done has been a contradiction to it's reasonings.

They don't just invalidate your choices, they invalidate a character's common sense. There is no reason why Shepard, Paragon or Renegade would confide in this entity's reasonings.

I quite enjoyed the first game and was really digging the notion of my choices in Game 1 affecting stuff that'd happen in Game 3 even, because it seemed such an ambitious and cool concept. If the truth is "Nah, doesn't matter that much," then I'm less inclined to bother playing. If the truth is also "Oh, and the ending is a huge downer" then, yeah, still not interested in playing.
When it all comes tumbling down, all your choices amount to just numbers. That's it.

Did you save the Rachni Queen? Good, because now you'll have to do that same scenario all over again down to the exact letter by choosing to kill her or save her again. And when you do, all you get is +50 points towards your war effort. You don't see them ever again.

And that happens a lot at the end. You do all this cool stuff to build up a force to fight the Reapers, but when you finally get to Earth, the only aliens who fight along side you are your squad mates. None of the forces you've rallied up ever show up during actual game play in the final. You could have made the worst decisions and didn't do anything to build up your forces, and it wouldn't make any difference in how the final act plays out.

Oh! I take that back. There is one instance that changes the final act. In ME2, there's an Asari serial murderer named Morinth who's mother Samara (your squad mate) has to kill. You could choose between who lives and who dies, and you can actually have Morinth kill her mother and join your squad. Here are the consequences of these actions.

1. Samara Lives
In Mass Effect 3, Shepard aids Samara in the Asari sanctuary where she tries to rescue her other two daughters from the Reapers. She manages to save one, and can be spared from killing herself and joining the fight (which you don't see her take part in).

In Summary: Samara's role was written, developed, and acted.

2. Morinth Lives
In Mass Effect 3, Morinth leaves you a text message at the beginning of the game saying that she had to leave the Normandy before it was taken by the Alliance. That's her entire role in the game until the last battle on Earth where she appears as a Banshee.... Literally. She is just a regular enemy Banshee who no one acknowledges that it's Morinth. It's just a Banshee with a name change.

In Summary: Words of text and a name change to a regular enemy unit.

So, with that in mind, is it really worth it FOR SOMEONE LIKE ME (as in someone for whom a bad ending will make you say "Well that's a whole lot of time I'll never get back. F**k.") to play the other games in the series after the first one?
ME2 is a good title, even though I feel it was targeted towards the mass market a little too much. You will be kind of disappointed in the choices you made in ME1 not having that much of an impact though.
- Udina will be the councilman regardless, even if you choose Anderson.
- Characters specific to ME1 will have some quests, but If you didn't interact with them, they're replaced by unknown characters who fulfill the same role.
- C-Sec will be heavily human based regardless if you save the council or not. Sacrificing the council in the first game is what was to lead to a human run C-Sec.

And for the big ME2 choice that carries over into ME3....

Choosing whether or not to destroy the Collector Base only amounts to a 10 point difference in the war effort. THAT IS IT.

Also, if you do play Mass Effect 2,
enjoy Harbinger while you can, because he has no relevance to the game outside of this one moment that could have been fulfilled by another unnamed Reaper.
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
Well, if said cutscenes are improvements on what happens, then it might be worth it.

But I think my initial response of "I'm gonna wait and see" is the right way to go. I've got plenty of other stuff to play right now, so no need to start up ME2. Hell, I never even played Dragon Age 1 and I bought a bunch of the DLC for that, so I might as well play that first.

Oh, and I hear DA1 has nothing to do with DA2 in the sense of your character or decisions in the world mattering in the second game. True?
I'll download it since it's free and eventually get another copy of ME3 when it's cheap. I know what you man I have so many games to finish it isn't funny.
 

Jeyl

Master Member
Oh, and I hear DA1 has nothing to do with DA2 in the sense of your character or decisions in the world mattering in the second game. True?
Not really. For instance, the dalish elves and their conflict with the cursed humans has a little come back, Alistair will show up depending on what role he fulfilled in DAO as either an exiled drunkard, a Gray Warden Leader, or as a King who may or may not be married to your Warden character. The Dwarven conflict form Orzammar also has a small role. Characters who return from DAO will even make specific references to pretty unimportant events from DAO like Liliana remembering Isabella when the two of them had a lesbian three way on her ship with my Warden. Yes, that bit is remembered.

When it comes to comparing the two Dragon Age games, DAII comes off more like a story that has no real significance to the over all scheme of things. You go from a Warden who saved the world to some refugee who's tasked as the city's glorified janitor. And by the end of DAII, you have to make a choice in who you side with. What made this choice infamous was that regardless of which side you picked, it all plays out in the same exact way. You kill both the leaders. And the game ends the same way it started. A story told by a dwarf to some uninteresting character who literally states she got nothing from it. What makes this more bearable than ME3's ending is that Dragon Age can still redeem itself should BioWare decide to make a third one. Hopefully one with an actual title instead of just a bloody number.

Wonder how many times the writers and developers will be asked "Will it end the same way as Mass Effect 3?".
 

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Jeyl

Master Member
I'll download it since it's free and eventually get another copy of ME3 when it's cheap. I know what you man I have so many games to finish it isn't funny.
Just wait for the reviews to come out. See the videos that many players will post online. That's what I'm going to do. There are still many things about the overall game I still don't like that has nothing to do with the ending.
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
I agree. I wouldn't mind it so much if half the missions didn't involve running around scanning planets. Some more on the ground missions would be nice. I don't see this ending well for bioware if they aren't careful. Like i said i got so many old games to play it's not a priority and i think i still have plenty of achievements for the original 2 games to get.
 

MooMooEgg

Sr Member
I"m no where near as picky as Jeyl, but I agree with all his points.

I greatly enjoyed the ME series despite the minor and major faults (hell, nothing is perfect). As I was playing ME3, I was loving it. The gameplay was much better and story was much more intense than the first two games. Sadly though, without reiterating the points made by Jeyl, the ending was HORRIBLE.

HORRIBLE!

I was expecting something that really focused on the choices you made throughout the past games. Maybe something like:

If you saved the rachnai queen, she would help save a species (lets say the Quarians) who was being overpowered in the final battle. If you didn't save her, then the race would basically be wiped out in the end no matter how high your galactic readiness and troop numbers were. Or, if you didn't save her, but helped ally the Geth and the Quarians, then perhaps the quarian numbers wouldn't be reduced as drastically, but there would be a big issue regarding repopulation or something.

I dunno... Bioware could have done SOMETHING more to really make you feel everything you did mattered.

However, getting back to Solo's main topic, I think it's worth playing ME2, simply because of the stories relating to the main players in the second game. You won't care about the Illusive Man in 3 if you didn't play 2. You won't care as much when you're reunited with a few of your old crew and the sacrifices made by them in the third game.

Yes, the ending of the trilogy is ridiculously bad and will go down in gaming history, but someone did mention the journey, and the journey will be greatly diminished if you don't play all three games.
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
When I save the queen in 1 and heard from her in 2 I was expecting a massive fleet of the ships they mention in the news in 2 to come swooping in to open a can of whoopass on the Reapers. Same with the Geth, I figured that they'd stop their fighting, at least the ones not with the Reapers, and help out too.
 

Solo4114

Master Member
Yes, the ending of the trilogy is ridiculously bad and will go down in gaming history, but someone did mention the journey, and the journey will be greatly diminished if you don't play all three games.
Ah, but you misunderstand my attitude. Basically, if the ending sucks, for me at least, it'll diminish the enjoyment of the journey. Thus, the journey ends up being less worth taking if the ending sucks.


Now, with respect to ME3 and the ME series as a whole, I loved the first game and am content to never play another entry in the series if the ending for the trilogy sucks. (I expect that ME2 is very much a "middle" chapter which introduces a larger threat as a meaningful thing, and then ends but leaves a lot open -- something I don't recall ME1 doing as much.)

Frankly, for me, given the wealth of good entertainment out there in all manner of forms, I'm perfectly fine with not ever playing the other two games, especially if the end will be disappointing. For me, the notion that "Yeah, but don't focus on the ending, focus on the journey" misses the point. I don't see a reason why you can't have both in your entertainment -- a satisfying journey, AND a satisfying ending. Why should I bother with an either/or situation when there are options out there that are satisfying or at least uniform in their presentation. I'd actually rather play a "pretty good" journey with a "pretty good" ending than an AWESOME journey with a craptastic ending. Why? Because the craptastic ending -- for me -- will so diminish the journey that I'll just be pissed I spent my time/energy on it.
 

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Nwerke

Master Member
Wes, absolutely. The Rachnai issue is built up to lead you to expect them to make a major contribution. Instead, you get a repeat of the same thing from the first game, and then...nothing. They live, or they die - that's it.

Is it because they wrote that storyline out for the PSII version of ME2? Meh, they shoulda fudged it a little, but it was only some background dialogue anyway!

Dan, I was going to avoid the game completely. Unknown to me, my wife had preordered it as a birthday present. I started a 'from scratch' playthrough tonight as I was still only in the early stages of a paragon playthrough of 2, to get a good result for import. If I'd known how little it mattered I might not have bothered, but I'll probably carry on with 2 as I do enjoy the game. 3 plays very, very well so far but there's already plot holes and dopey decisions showing, and I'm only two or three hours in. I probably won't bother importing my 2 character and restarting.

The ending won't kill the enjoyment I get along the way, because that's done and set in stone, for me. It has killed my hopes for the franchise's future prospects, but that's a different thing. I do expect to be pissed as hell when I suffer through the end, though. Might even turn off without saving before that point.
 
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Wes R

Legendary Member
They did the same thing with Legion. If he died in ME2 you get a fake legion which cancels out the reason to have him live or die at the end of ME2. If they hadn't had Drew "leave" Bioware none of this would have probably happened. They screwed up the storyline of the novels he was writing for ME too. He wrote the first 2 or 3 then the last one is like ME3 and makes no sense.

Important edit: Apparently the "extended dlc" is just a bunch of crap cut scenes and no new game play thus why it's free. The bsn is already starting to rage at this. I hope EA enjoys their pending bankruptcy when folks stop buying games and bioware enjoys layoffs.
 
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MooMooEgg

Sr Member
Important edit: Apparently the "extended dlc" is just a bunch of crap cut scenes and no new game play thus why it's free. The bsn is already starting to rage at this. I hope EA enjoys their pending bankruptcy when folks stop buying games and bioware enjoys layoffs.
I can understand no new gameplay, but is the new material really cut scenes? So there was originally more planned for the endings, yet Bioware opted to leave it out? That kind of seems convenient for them, much like the Day 1 Javik DLC. I have a feeling this whole ending debacle was planned...

Step 1: Base the story of the third game on the crap endings while leaving out the actual meat of the endings.
Step 2: Laugh at the inerweb rage.
Step 3: "Fix" the endings by reinserting the cut footage.
Step 4: Profit and be praised like Gods.

:facepalm
 

MooMooEgg

Sr Member
Wes, absolutely. The Rachnai issue is built up to lead you to expect them to make a major contribution. Instead, you get a repeat of the same thing from the first game, and then...nothing. They live, or they die - that's it.
Yeah, that was one of the reasons why I brought up the Rachnai. I remember an interview with someone from Bioware who made such a big deal about that particular decision. And since we barely heard from them in 2, I was expecting them to play a major part in 3... not just have them in a single mission where I had to save the Queen again.
 

Solo4114

Master Member
That's a real shame because Bioware has clearly shown they have the capacity to make amazing games. The supposition here is that it's just EA's meddling that has screwed them, which probably isn't too far from the truth. EA is just...bad. They get it right sometimes, but more because even a stopped watch is right twice a day, rather than anything else.

The extra cut scenes might actually help the game narrative, though, which for me would be more satisfying.

Anyone remember the end of Fallout 1? You got to see what happened to the places you'd visited, based on the decisions you made during the game and how fast you completed the game. Some stuff was written in stone, but other stuff was fungible. IE: if you did XYZ, then the residents of ABC town survived or were wiped out. That's what I'd expect to see with this "free DLC."


What I have to wonder, though, is that if this is scheduled to hit relatively soon, then it must have been completed either very recently or right around when it was published, which calls into question whether the game was kicked out the door too soon, or whether this stuff was intentionally held back with the thought that people would simply be buzzing about "ooh what happens next?" and then EA would ride to the rescue by offering them some additional cut scenes...for a nominal fee, of course. Now that they're catching a lot of backlash, they're offering this one for free. That's one theory, anyway.


Actually, this would fit, especially if the scenes are ALREADY ON THE DISC and were simply waiting to be unlocked/implemented into the game. EA has made no secret of its addiction to charging customers for "on the disc DLC." Battlefield Bad Company 2 is a prime example.
 

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